Last night I talked through something in therapy with an odd result. I haven’t put it to words before, but something inside me feels like an abused animal, lashing out irrationally at anyone, anything, wisps of smoke or shadows. As I thought about this, I imagined a black wolf with lots of sharp white teeth and dark red eyes always ranging around on the outskirts of where I am, waiting to be hurt again.
It always makes me kind of queasy to hear people talk about their inner children, to anthropomorphize something that was just an idea, just another part of who they are. But I see the appeal now: I can picture that wolf so clearly, and I can see it lunging for throats, so afraid to be hurt again that it will hurt first. There is a certain clarity in causing other people pain: action, reaction. One, two.
I despise that clarity. I will train the wolf.